Happening Today: Groundbreaking for Dillon factory expansion

DILLON, SOUTH CAROLINA (WMBF) - Groundbreaking on the multi-million dollar expansion of Harbor Freight Tools megasite will be Wednesday morning at 10 a.m.

The site is located at exit 190 on I-95 North in Dillon County. Governor Nikki Haley is expected to attend the ceremony.

County Leaders say this expansion will bring 200 jobs and $75 million into the area. This is one of the largest investments that Marion, Dillon and Marlboro Counties have ever seen.

Harbor Freight Tools said it will expand its present facilities in Dillon by one million square feet. In April, an announcement was made at the Wellness Center in Dillon. County Leaders from around the Pee Dee came out to show their support for the expansion.

"This has been an everyday long night type of process, but it was very critical we worked out all the details," said Tony McNeil, Executive Director of Development in Dillon.

McNeil said there were several hurdles that every entity involved had to overcome. McNeil went on to say that Thursday's announcement was a win for everyone, especially the citizens.

"Citizens come up and ask about jobs, they ask for economic relief. What I want to tell them today, today's announcement gives them some economic relief," said McNeil.

Harbor Freight Tools' Vice President said Dillon is the perfect place to expand. The readily-available workforce and low cost of business is very attractive to large industries, said Ronny Roberson.  McNeil said railways and 95 were two other features which caused the company to expand.

"The construction will take around ten months, possibly less. Before the end of this year, sometime around November, we should have the building fully constructed," said McNeil.

A job fair will be held in October to fill those positions. McNeil said various positions will be filled. Workers will make around $11 an hour.

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